How to be a G.I.R.L. this Halloween!

Halloween is just a few weeks away and we have some awesome G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)TM inspired suggestions for all our Girl Scouts! These costumes range in complexity, but you can always think outside the box to celebrate these outstanding women. Check out our suggestions and post your own below!

We’ve designated how difficult we think each costume would be (if you were to DIY it) with these symbols – ❧ = easy, ❧❧❧❧❧ = difficult. If you are already a soccer player or a ballerina, some of these may be easier for you!

 

Go-Getters

Alicia Alonso – Cuban ballerina highly regarded for her convincing portrayals of leading roles in the great works of classical and Romantic ballet.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧❧

 

Mia Hamm – is a retired professional soccer player, two-time Olympic gold medalist, and two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup champion. She is hailed as a soccer icon.

Difficulty Level:

  • What you need:
    • Athletic shorts (soccer shorts – women’s)
    • Team USA Women’s soccer shirt (with a #9!)
    • Soccer cleats or tennis shoes
    • Hair: pulled back in a ponytail

Innovators

Jane Goodall  – British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace. Considered to be the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees, she is the founder of the Jane Goodall Institute.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧

  • What you need:
    • Khaki shirt & shorts, tennis shoes
    • Notebook and pen – you’re taking notes on your observations!
    • A stuffed Chimpanzee is always a plus
    • Hair: pulled back in a ponytail

 

Katherine Johnson  – is an African-American mathematician who made contributions to the United States’ aeronautics and space programs with the early application of digital electronic computers at NASA. She is one of the main subjects of the movie Hidden Figures.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧❧

  • What you need:
    • 1950s inspired dress (you can usually find something in a thrift store. Some 1980s cotton dresses, sans the shoulder pads, can work! Just look for inspiration images). You can also use a white button-up shirt and patterned skirt.
    • Black cat-eye glasses
    • Notepad, calculator and pen/chalk – you have calculations to do!
    • Hair: 1950s styled (depending on your hair type, there are lots of tutorials online!)

 

Risk-takers

Cleopatra – One of Egypt’s last pharaohs, Cleopatra was a fierce queen who was one of the most powerful women in history.  She commanded armies at 21, spoke several languages and was highly educated.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧❧ (since Egyptian costume pieces are popular, we gave this an easier rating since you can find a lot of items in a thrift store)

  • What you need:
    • Dress & Accessories (DIY tutorial for gold jewelry & dress)
      • White, loose dress (or an Egyptian queen costume), tan sandals
      • Lots of gold accessories (bangles, rings and a neck collar)
      • Crown with snake or Egyptian crown – whatever you can find!
    • Hair: Black wig with gold headdress or braided black hair
    • Makeup: LOTS of black eyeliner, blue eyeshadow and mascara for a very bold eye

 

Malala Yousafzai – This education activist is the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. After being shot by the Taliban, Malala survived and has become a global advocate for education for girls.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧

  • What you need:
    • A colorful headscarf – aka: Hijab (to put your hair under)
    • A long shift dress and leggings. If you have access to traditional dresses like Malala wears, there are lots of options!
    • Bonus: a copy of I am Malala and a fake a Nobel Peace Prize to wear around your neck.

 

Leaders

Maya Angelou – was an American poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist. Angelou is best known for her series of seven autobiographies, which focus on her childhood and early adult experiences, the most famous of which is I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.

Difficulty Level: ❧❧

  • What you need:
    • A very bright headscarf for your hair (in a head wrap style). Get inspired here!
    • Black dress or blazer and shirt/skirt
    • Large pearl necklace & earrings.
    • Bonus: a copy of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings & a fake Presidential Medal of Freedom!

 

Sonya Sotomayor – is a Supreme Court Justice of the United States, serving since August 2009. She is the first Justice of Hispanic heritage, the first Latina and its third female justice.

Difficulty Level:

  • What you need:
    • Black graduation robe
    • Gavel
    • Hair: curled and down (if you have a shorter haircut).

 

BONUS: The Ultimate G.I.R.L.

Juliette Gordon Low – The founder of Girl Scouts, Juliette Gordon Low left a legacy that has changed the lives of millions of women. This ultimate G.I.R.L was pretty spectacular – check out our past blog on her!

Difficulty Level: ❧❧❧

  • What you need:
    • A beige or dark dress with buttons and a collar with a brown belt around the waist.
    • Hair: Style under a Fedora style, brown hat. Decorate it with the Girl Scout trefoil in the center using black felt!
    • Bonus: Get an old book you can mark up and write “Girl Scouts” across the front to look like you’re on official Girl Scout business.

Are you dressing up as another awesome G.I.R.L.? Tell us all about your creative idea below in the comments.

Girl Scout Lingo, Decoded – Part 1

Everything a new Girl Scout Family Needs to Know

So you’ve signed your girl up to Lead like a Girl Scout! Maybe you’re a brand new Girl Scout family, or perhaps you’re rejoining the Movement as an adult to empower your girl the opportunity to stand up, speak up and take action! Whichever situation you’re in, you may be feeling a bit lost with all the Girl Scout lingo that’s being thrown around! Well, we’re here to help and get you fully into the Girl Scout loop!

Across the United States, Girl Scouts are 2.6 million strong—1.8 million girls and 800,000 adults who believe in the power of every G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ to change the world.

Our extraordinary journey began more than 100 years ago with the original G.I.R.L., Juliette Gordon “Daisy” Low. On March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Georgia, she organized the very first Girl Scout troop, and every year since, we’ve honored her vision and legacy, building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.

Organizational Structure
Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) is our overarching organization
Girl Scouts of NE Kansas & NW Missouri (GSKSMO) is one of 112 Girl Scout councils in the country
Service Unit is a community of volunteers and girls in Troops within a geographic area within our council
Troop is a group of girls who get together to earn badges, go on field trips and explore the outdoors regularly and who belong to a service unit.

Uniform
Girl Scouts at each level now wear one required element (tunic, sash, or vest) to display official pins and awards. Girls can mix and match pieces from the official Girl Scout collection to complete the uniform, or add items from their own wardrobes! Learn where the different insignias go on her uniform here!

Fun patches (items received to commemorate an event, occasion, or product sales recognitions) always go on the back of the tunic, sash or vest.

Girl Scout Sign
Girl Scouts make the Girl Scout sign—raising three fingers of the right hand with the thumb holding down the pinky—when they say the Girl Scout Promise. The three fingers represent the three parts of the Promise.

Motto
The Girl Scout motto is “Be prepared.” In the 1947 Girl Scout Handbook, the motto was explained this way: “A Girl Scout is ready to help out wherever she is needed. Willingness to serve is not enough; you must know how to do the job well, even in an emergency.” The same holds true today.

Slogan
The Girl Scout slogan, which has been used since 1912, is “Do a good turn daily.” The slogan is a reminder of the many ways girls can contribute positively to the lives of others.

Greeting
Girl Scouts can greet one another with the Girl Scout handshake, used by Girl Scouts and Girl Guides all over the world. The handshake is made by shaking hands with the left hand and making the Girl Scout sign with the right. The left hand is nearest to the heart and signifies friendship.

Friendship Circle
Representing the unbroken chain of friendship among Girl Scouts and Girl Guides around the world, the Friendship Circle involves Girl Scouts standing in a circle, crossing their right arms over their left, and clasping hands with their friends on both sides. Everyone then makes a silent wish as a friendship squeeze is passed from hand to hand around the circle.

 SWAPS
Girl Scouts often make small tokens of friendship to exchange with the Girl Scouts they meet while traveling. These little gifts are called “SWAPS,” which stands for “Special Whatchamacallits Affectionately Pinned Somewhere.”

We hope this brings a little more understanding to the awesome world that is Girl Scouting! Stay tuned for part 2 of Girl Scout Lingo, Decoded next week where we’ll break down the Girl Scout calendar and dive into acronyms commonly used in Girl Scouting! Have a specific question? Leave them in the comments below!

Camp Tongawood: A Powerful Place to Empower Today’s G.I.R.L.s

In preparation for our 2017 Alumnae Reunion Weekend and Lifetime Member Picnic (Sept 23 – 24), we’ve been taking a look at the histories and folklore that make our Girl Scout camps so special. At Camp Daisy Hindman we learned about a community that came together to support girls through volunteerism and philanthropy. At Camp Prairie Schooner, we learned how Girl Scout volunteers fought for the camp and proved to everyone that G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)TM can do anything. The story of the Oakledge Ish-ki-ti-ni showed us the power of the Girl Scout camping experience and the lasting legacy alumnae leave on camps.  Today, we’ll explore the third camp in our Council – Camp Tongawood – and how it is empowering the G.I.R.L.s of today through unparalleled leadership experiences during those awesome day camps.

Camp Tongawood is a special, outdoor sanctuary in Tonganoxie, KS where girls can zipline, fish and create memories that last a lifetime. In addition to awesome programming on site, Camp Tongawood serves as home to day camps throughout the summer. These camps offer incredible leadership experiences for teens. Most day camps allow teens to have innovative leadership experiences for their younger Girl Scout sisters and the creativity is always inspiring. For some teens, it’s the first time they are taking on a leadership role.

As a Day Camp Teen Leader, older Girl Scouts get to transition into a role of leadership and learn the basics of planning and running a large event. Considering some Day Camps have hundreds of attendees, these are impressive events that Girl Scout teens put on! With the support of their leaders, they plan events, coordinate volunteers and help run the operations. At Camp Tongawood, girls are able to offer fishing, STEM activities, crafts, fire camp bonding, ziplining and a wide variety of other opportunities.

What’s especially beautiful about Camp Tongawood is the wide variety of multifunction spaces (both inside and outside) that allow girls to come up with unique experiences in the outdoors. Have a space-themed Day Camp? Girl Scouts planned a slime STEM activity that helped younger Girl Scout learn about mixing ingredients to create something gooey! Ready to take a leap? Day Camps are able to offer ziplining that help build confidence for girls.

In a world where girls are getting less and less time outdoors, Day Camps often offer Girl Scouts a chance to just be girls in the outdoors. As Alumnae, Elizabeth Bourquin (aka “Weebles”) said, “I think it’s really important for girls, especially in society right now, to learn outdoor stuff because we are becoming an indoor society. Girls have to know they can do whatever they want – it’s not man’s world anymore, it’s a woman’s world.” Day Camps help girls push their limits in ways that being indoors just simply doesn’t allow.

Camp Tongawood has also been home to some really amazing STEM experiences. From stargazing to geocaching, girls have had the chance to explore this property using science. Where else are there outdoor places completely dedicated to empowering G.I.R.L.s except for Girl Scout camps? We can’t think of any!

Thank you to all the alumnae, volunteers, teens and staff that have made Camp Tongawood an extra special place for today’s girl. Your dedication to Girl Scout programming make Day Camp leadership experiences possible for teen girls. If you’ve had a Day Camp at Tongawood, we’d love to hear your camp experiences in the comments below! Share with us how this property inspired your own G.I.R.L.s (or your own experience).

Don’t forget to join us Sept 23 – 24 for our GSKSMO Alumnae Reunion Weekend and Lifetime Member Picnic! Registration is now closed, but contact VirginiaPennington@gsksmo.org to see if any spots are still available. Visit www.gsksmo.org/reunion for more information.

 

Using the NEW Volunteer Toolkit

By now you’ve probably heard of the new Volunteer Toolkit – also known as the VTK! As back to troop season is here, we want to make sure you know about some of the awesome features of this new digital planning tool that will make your Girl Scout year a total success!

The Volunteer Toolkit is a new digital planning tool that gives volunteers resources and program content to get the year started—and keep it going smoothly! Fully customizable, the toolkit is digitally responsive so volunteers can plan and prepare practically anywhere (yes, from your mobile device too)!

Girls have more fun when they can shape their own experience, do hands-on activities, and work together as teams. With the new toolkit, girls and leaders can explore meeting topics and program activities together, and follow the fun as they plan their Girl Scout year!

Here are some highlights of the Volunteer Toolkit!

Year Plan Options – When you log in for the first time as a Daisy, Brownie or Junior troop leader, you will see year plan options for you and your troop that includes badges and journeys. They’re prepopulated in system and you can pick the one that your troop wants to do! But don’t feel like you’re confined to that year plan, they’re totally customizable and moveable. You can also mix different badges in with your Journey work, just click on the Year Plan Library tab.

 

Setting Troop Meeting Times & Locations – You can configure the date time and meeting locations for the year. You will also be able to see national holidays and schedule your meetings around those you choose. For meeting locations, each meeting can be customized, so if you’re participating in one of our Community Partner Programs, you can customize the address for that meeting.

 

Meeting Plan Overview – After you’ve selected your meetings from the Year Plan Library, you can click on Meeting Plan and see all the details for each meeting. Under the Planning Materials section are three resources for leading a successful meeting! The Meeting Overview is a high-level look at that meeting, the Activity Plan has the meeting activities planned out, including duration time for each activity. Lastly, the Material List is like your shopping list. It has all of the items you’ll need for the meeting that week.

 

Communicate with Caregivers – Through VTK, you can communicate and remind caregivers about upcoming Girl Scout meetings and activities! As girls register and join your troop, their contact information is saved in your My Troop tab. Then, each meeting you have the option to email out a reminder and information about that week’s meeting to all caregivers.

Resources Search Tab – The Resources Search tab lets you search for a robust search engine that lets you search for VTK content like meeting aids, meeting overviews and additional supporting materials and info you’ll need as a troop leader. You can add these materials to any meeting of your choice to supplement your planning for that meeting!

Have you been utilizing the VTK?! Let us know some of your favorite features in the comments below!

 

 

Built by G.I.R.L.s for G.I.R.L.s: A Look Inside the “Magical” Camp Prairie Schooner

Frolicking with the Prairie Fairy and adventures out in Farmer’s Field – those are experiences that Girl Scouts who call Camp Prairie Schooner home are very familiar with. For more than 70 years, Girl Scouts have taken pride and ownership in this beautiful camp located near the Little Blue River in Kansas City, MO. It’s also the location of our upcoming Alumnae Reunion Weekend, Lifetime Member Picnic and Trefoil Society Pinning Ceremony on Sept 23 – 24! Today we’ll take a look how this camp came to be and the women whose tenacity made it a reality.

Camp Prairie Schooner patch (left); Flag ceremony and patches (center) and early sign (right).

In the early 1940s, the Independence Council of Girl Scouts decided they wanted a camp for Kansas City Girl Scouts. A leader in that initiative was Mrs. Dewitt, who was active in the community and knew about a war time fund that had unallocated money. During World War II, the War Chest fund had been active in raising funds and by 1945, the remaining money was in limbo, ready to be reorganized.

Mrs. Dewitt, advocating for girls, approached the War Chest Board about the funds before they reorganized and the leadership wasn’t sure if they could trust ladies to establish and run a camp. As we know, G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)TM can do anything, and the Girl Scout Council knew they could achieve their goal, even if the Board doubted them.

The Council found the land where Camp Prairie Schooner currently sits and decided it was an ideal location. With a train stop just a short hike away, wooded areas and space for camp, they advocated for the funds. Despite pushback from the War Chest Board, Mrs. Dewitt was a hard woman to say “no” to and the Board sent the Jackson County Planning Commission to look at the land and make a recommendation. They had planned to use this as a stalling technique, hoping the women would give up before getting the funds.

Jerry Manning was sent to inspect the site and as he visited, he met the team behind the camp plan. It included community leaders and strong women who knew this would be a success. He realized this was a project backed by serious people wanting to create a better world for girls, not a whim that ladies had. He made the recommendation that the War Chest

Camp Prairie Schooner staff from 1988 (left) and approx. late 1970s (right).

funds should be given to Girl Scouts, and they were. After they acquired the land, the Council asked Mr. Manning to become the Camp Chairman, which started many years of service he gave to Girl Scouts, including serving as President of the Pioneer Trails Council!

Cookie money and funds from the War Chest paid the $4,000 for 127 acres of land that is now Camp Prairie Schooner. Still having reservations about the project, the War Chest Board held the title to Camp Prairie Schooner until the Council proved the camp was successful. After the installation of a pool and successful management of the property, they realized that these G.I.R.L.s meant business and the title was officially given to Girl Scouts.

Camp Prairie Schooner philanthropy! Girl Scouts from SU 638 & 639 built a Gaga Pit in 2015 (left) and Burns & McDonnell host annual work days at camp (right).

Today, Camp Prairie Schooner stands as a living testament to the power of G.I.R.L.s who wanted to make the world better for young women. We thank those early pioneers for their vision and tenacity that brought that camp to life as well as the current day donors who add to camp each year! Businesses, donors, and girls have added new facilities and games to camp, creating more opportunities and adventures (read our blog post about girl donated projects). Thank you!

We invite you to join us at Camp Prairie Schooner for our Alumnae Reunion! Registration closes SOON, so register today at www.gsksmo.org/reunion! See you at camp!

Camp Daisy Hindman: G.I.R.L.- Built

Summer is coming to a close and we are taking a look back at the histories and stories that make up the camping experience at GSKSMO to gear up for our 2017 alumnae reunion (Sept 23 – 24, 2017). Today, we’re looking at the early history and community support that brought Camp Daisy Hindman to life. As with Girl Scouting today, the story of Camp Daisy Hindman is truly one of community, girl support, female leadership and a dedication to empowering girls.

1925 – The Search Begins

Daisy Hindman is elected Girl Scout Commissioner of Topeka with her main focus on finding a camp property for area Girl Scouts. The Council trampled across a lot of land whenever they got a lead on a potential campsite until they found their future camp property.

Left: Girl Scouts outside a cabin at Camp Daisy in 1929; Center: Daisy Hindman; Right: Helen Zimmerman, director of Camp Kee-Wah-Kee in 1926 conferring with Daisy Hindman.

 

1929 – Camp Comes to Life

20 acres for camp were leased to Girl Scouts by Mr. & Mrs. Floyd Ross. The couple lived across the road and provided support to the mission. When word got out that a Girl Scout camp was being built, the community came together to make it a reality. Cabins were sponsored by donors, tradesmen donated time and skills, local companies and clubs donated materials, all in an effort to build the best facilities for girls. Girl Scouts hosted a marionette show that raised $2,000 and sold cookies for four years fund construction. In 1929, the first year camp sessions were held, with the camp unfinished. In fact, some cabins were completed the night before girls arrived. At the time, the camp was known as “Dover Camp” or “Established Camp.”

FUN FACT: L.G. Ehols, a local carpenter whose wife was on the Council, organized local tradesmen & carpenters to donate time to the project as a community project. The Council members cooked meals for the workers so they could go straight from work on Friday to working on camp.

1930 – Camp Officially Opens

10 more acres were acquired and camp officially opened in 1930. At the time, it had four cabins, a partially constructed lodge, hospital, office, outdoor kitchen and shower house. The units original were named Juliette Low, Ipesi (now Sleepy Hollow), Trails End (original end of the property) and Peter Pan.

1934 – Camp Gets Its Name

When Daisy Hindman relinquished office (with the debt for camp paid off and camp being considered one of the excellent Girl Scout camps in the country), Mrs. J R Borrow took office. The Council voted unanimously to officially name the camp “Camp Daisy Hindman” in honor of the former Commissioner.

Left: Girl Scouts at Camp Daisy dining hall (1940s); Right: News clippings describing girls leaving for camp (1934) and fundraising efforts for camp (1962), Troop leaders gathering firewood (photo courtesy of Velma “Fae” Dinkle).

 

 1930 – 1948 – Camp Expands and The War

Between 1930 – 1943, an additional 70 acres of land were added, making it 100 acres total. Over the years campers got to experience an International Camp (1936), horses on property and scholarships for girls in need. The 114th cavalry provided horses in 1938 and in 1940, horses from the Mott Riding Academy in Lawrence came to camp for the summer. During the war years of 1944 – 1948, no camp was held due to a gas shortage that made it too difficult to get girls to camp. In 1948, Girl Scouts sold over 20,000 boxes of cookies to make repairs to camp that allowed it to serve girls once again in 1949.

1949 to Today – Honoring Daisy Hindman and G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)TM

In the late 1950s, the song “Camp Daisy Hindman” was composed by Martha Adams, a camp director, and it is still in use today. In July 1962, the staff celebrated the 50th birthday of Girl Scouting and Daisy Hindman returned to camp. The campers were honored by her presence and celebrated this leader who made their camp a reality.

FUN FACT: Donors Mr. & Mrs. Arthur Springer said of their gift: “Our contribution was wholly unsolicited, but we have to many starry eyed little cookie sellers in our neighborhood, it was a matter of enlarging our pantry or sending a contribution.”

Left: Girl Scout with a horse (1970s/80s); Center: 2017 Girl Scout camp staff; Right: Campers in the pool at Camp Daisy (1970s/80s).

 

 

Today, Camp Daisy Hindman is a home to more than 2,000 Girl Scouts each year for a variety of camping opportunities. Girls can experience archery, geocaching, canoeing, kayaking and summer camp, thanks to the tireless efforts of donors and alumnae who continue to support the camp. Camp Daisy Hindman continues to offer a place for  G.I.R.L.s to grow  thanks to the hard work of Daisy Hindman, the Council and the community that came together to build this camp.

Thank you to the leaders who made our camp properties a reality, the donors who continue to fund improvements, the alumnae who keep history alive and the G.I.R.L.s who give life to the campsite each year. Camp Daisy Hindman truly is a special place.

We hope you’ll join us for the 2017 alumnae reunion to share camp stories, celebrate our Lifetime members, participate in adventure programming and rededicate Neal Lodge and the Oakledge Ish-ki-ti-ni! Registration closes September 8, so register today at https://www.gsksmo.org/reunion!

6 Activities for the Total Eclipse of the Heartland

Tomorrow, Monday, August 21st, a rare event will occur where the moon will pass between the Earth and Sun, creating a solar eclipse! What’s even better? Our council, NE Kansas and NW Missouri, has a few places where we’re in the path of totality, so we get some of the best views in the country! We want to give Girl Scouts some fun to learn how the solar system works and use STEM skills to learn about a real time natural event.

Note of caution: Looking directly at the Sun, at any time, is extremely dangerous for your eyes and the effects aren’t immediate, they often take a few hours for you to realize there’s been damage. Here’s a great video to help you know what’s safe and what’s not. The safest way to view the eclipse would be on TV. If you are opting for an in-person viewing, make sure you have eclipse viewing glasses (here’s an approved list of vendors with safe glasses from the American Astronomical Society). Also, don’t wear glasses, and use unfiltered binoculars, because according to the AAS, without filters on the binoculars themselves, your glasses can melt since the rays are more concentrated. You can also read some great safety tips for viewing on NASA’s eclipse website.

…Now that we’re all safe, let’s look at some fun STEM activities to do during the eclipse mania!

  1. What is a solar eclipse? Learning ahead of the eclipse

Take this opportunity to help Girl Scouts learn about the solar system and what exactly a solar eclipse is! We found some great, short videos for Girl Scouts to check out to learn about this eclipse and why it’s so special:

  1. Decorate your solar glasses

Many glasses already have some solar decoration on them, but Girl Scouts can be very creative! If your Girl Scouts have glasses, they can decorate them after the eclipse with what they saw! It’s a great way to keep a memory of the event.

NASA glasses decoration gallery and hashtag

  1. Make a Pin-Hole Camera

Can’t find solar eclipse glasses? Make your own pin hole camera in just a few minutes that will keep your eyes safe during the viewing. It’s a great activity for Girl Scouts who like hands-on activities.

How to Make a Pin Hole Camera

Bill Nye & the National Park Service Video on Creating a Pin Hole Camera

  1. Visit St. Joseph, MO!

Visit Girl Scout sisters (or if you live in St. Joe, invite Girl Scout sisters from other cities) to come view the eclipse! Since St. Joseph, MO is in the path of totality, it’s one of the few places in the world you can get the best view of the eclipse.

Information on the Eclipse in St. Joseph, MO

  1. Solar Eclipse Paper Plate Activity (for Daisy & Brownie Girl Scouts)

Let younger Girl Scouts decorate their own solar eclipse. This activity will help girls understand how the moon is blocking the light of the sun in a fun art project!

Total Eclipse Paper Plates

  1. Become a Junior Ranger Eclipse Explorer!

Bill Nye’s Planetary Society and the National Park Service have teamed up to create some great resources for kids all about the solar eclipse! You can either call a national park if you have one nearby to see if they have any booklets, or print your own book! It’s packed with activities and information! There’s also a 4 part video series featuring Bill Nye about the event.

Junior Ranger Eclipse Explore Book & Videos

These are just a few suggestions on ways to learn about STEM and get excited about the Great American Solar Eclipse! What did your troop do to celebrate? Post photos and comments below!

National S’mores Day: New Twists on a Classic

New twists on a classic. We’re sharing 5 exciting recipes with a new ingredient or two that really spice up the traditional s’more recipe. While the core ingredients of graham cracker, marshmallow and chocolate remain the same, we wanted to give you some ways to make this traditional treat.

…and speaking of a twist on an original…we have an exciting announcement! The delicious S’more Girl Scout cookie is OFFICIALLY RETURNING FOR 2018!! That’s right! You’ll be able to enjoy this popular new cookie all over again during the 2018 Cookie Season!

 

Grilled S’more Banana Packets

Who’s made bananas with chocolate over a campfire while camping with Girl Scouts? Well, you’ll love this one then! Just take a banana, slice down the middle, fill with marshmallows and chocolate, wrap in foil and after 10 minutes in the fire, you’ve got a great dessert. Once it’s cooled enough, unwrap the foil, top with graham crackers and enjoy. Full recipe here!

Image and recipe from Neighborfoodblog.com

S’more Hot Chocolate

In the winter, sometimes you just want something warm in a mug. Make up your favorite hot chocolate then top with a layer of toasted marshmallows (they have some tips for how to do this), drizzle chocolate and graham crackers on the top. Yum.

Image and recipe from Delish.com

 

 

“The Elvis S’more”

Put on your blue suede shoes and try out this salty and sweet combination! The addition of bananas, Reese’s peanut butter cups and bacon makes this sound like a treat that’ll make you dance the night away.

Image and recipe from TheKitchn.com

 

Mason Jar S’more Cakes

Need something you can distribute easily but packs a punch? Check out these delicious S’more Cakes served in a mason jar. A graham cracker crust layered with chocolate cake and marshmallow topping – WOW! It’s a perfect nod to summer and the toasted marshmallows on top have that ooey-gooeyness of camp. We suggest putting a piece of chocolate as a garnish on the top.

Image and recipe from HowSweetEats.com

 

S’more Cheesecake

Slice and servable option for s’mores! With a graham cracker crust, chocolate and topped with marshmallows, the addition of cheesecake is simply brilliant. Make ahead for your next event!

Image and recipe from Delish.com

 

BONUS RECIPES

For Girl Scouts and families with dietary restrictions, we have some cool twists for you too! While many of the treats above can be made with substitutions (like specialty graham crackers, etc), we wanted to highlight a few options that offer more flexibility.

Gluten-Free S’mores Krispie Treats

Substitute gluten-free rice krispies for the tradition graham cracker and whip up some s’mores krispie treats! You can find the full recipe here.

Image and recipe from DishingDelish.com

Gluten-Free S’more Parfaits

A make-ahead dessert that’s gluten-free?! Yes! Check out this parfait that’s even better when prepared a day ahead. The recipe includes everything you’ll need, including a recipe to make a gluten-free cookie (or use your favorite type).

Image and recipe from GlutenFreeOnAShoeString.com

How creative can you get, Girl Scouts? Let us know what s’mores concoctions you’ve created by commenting below! We’d love to hear what you’ve made and if you’ve tried any of these recipes. Don’t forget, you can also get to thinking about all the great ways to use the S’more Girl Scout cookie – returning for the 2018 Cookie Program!

4 BIG Reasons to Register for the New Girl Scout Year

How is your back to school list coming? Have you been to back to school night yet? Purchased new school supplies and clothes? What about register for the new Girl Scout year?

Well what are you waiting for?! There are big things in store for all of our G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)™ this new membership year!

  1. Volunteer Toolkit
    Save time and energy this year using our brand new Volunteer Toolkit! The Volunteer Toolkit helps parents and volunteers easily plan meetings and activities; keep track of important information; and, ultimately, make it easier to support amazing experiences for girls!

    In the toolkit, most programming for girls in grades K–5 is auto populated so troop leaders can view activity plans and necessary materials, customize meetings, and track troop finances all in one place. Plus, the instructions included throughout make subjects that might otherwise intimidate some volunteers! The best part? It’s accessible on mobile devices!

  1. New Badges
    Did you hear that Girl Scouts of the USA has released the largest badge update in over a decade?! Girl Scouts of all levels can now earn a variety of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) badges to proudly display on the front of their vest/sash!

    See what local Girl Scouts have to say about them on KSHB 41 and in the Kansas City Star!


  2. Fall Outdoor Experience Programs
    When you register for the new Girl Scout year, you are also able to register for Fall Outdoor Experience Programs! Get your first choice of Low Ropes sessions, register for one of our new Excursions or reserve space at one of our properties, just to name a few things! See all the new programming at GSKSMO.org/outdoors!

  3. On-time Tee
    Girl Scouts (adults and girls!) who register by Sept. 28 are eligible to purchase this super soft tee. This is THE GSKSMO shirt of the year and you don’t want to miss out on your chance to get it!

So what are you waiting for?! There is a year full of go-getting, innovating, risk-taking and leading when you register for the new Girl Scout year as a G.I.R.L.!

Celebrating the Incredible Volunteers of the West Region

G.I.R.L.s (Go-getters, Innovators, Risk-takers, Leaders)TM are changing the world every day and our incredible volunteers are leading them to those successes. From community partner events to Gold Award projects and community service, Girl Scouts are having the time of their lives and learning life skills from their leaders and volunteers. On Sunday, June 4, we were able to honor and thank the inspiring volunteers from across our West Region.

The West Region event was held in Topeka, KS and welcomed families and Girl Scouts from the region. Girl Scouts and volunteers alike enjoyed our G.I.R.L photo booth, learned about region successes, chatted with friends and saw the awesome things Girl Scouts are accomplishing. Our West Region volunteers rock!

At the awards ceremony, we honored 5 outstanding individuals with the Appreciation Pin, an award that recognizes outstanding service given to at least one service unit. These are the stand-out volunteers that make a real impact on the lives of girls.  We also honored Service Unit 715’s Recruitment Team with the Recruitment Award and the “Be More, Do More” Training Team from Service Unit 701 with the Innovator award! Thank you, volunteer teams! Many more awards were presented and you can see a full list at the link below.

Philanthropy is vital to the success of Girl Scouts, so we wanted to recognize three awesome philanthropists from the West. Rosalyn Carr was honored as the Daisy’s Circle Philanthropist, Barby Craft was honored with the Philanthropist Award and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas Foundation received the Corporate Philanthropist Award. Thank you for investing in girls!

It was an awesome event in the West and we thank everyone that was able to join us! Because of your hard work, dedication, and recognition of the power of G.I.R.L.s, you are making the world a better place by inspiring young women. Thank you to all the volunteers who make our council amazing.

To see a full list of awardees and photos from the event, view our program and gallery.